1. (also b, bogger) a person, usu. a man, a ‘bloke’; esp. as silly bugger, daft bugger etc, none of which is necessarily pej.
|in Pills to Purge Melancholy I 161: These Bougers drink and whore, / And riot on each small Occasion.|
|Brave Irishman I ii: Do you mean to front me, you French boogre? – Eh.|
|Banquet of Wit 58: Monf. de Vergy [...] hearing a woman call out ‘fresh butter,’ drew his sword, thinking she called him ‘French bugar’.|
|Song No. 10 Papers of Francis Place (1819) n.p.: With my popps in my pocket and a cutlass in my hand / So I rode up to the Diligence and bid the Bug---s stand.|
|Lex. Balatronicum n.p.: bugger. A blackguard, a rascal, a term of reproach. Mill the bloody bugger; beat the damned rascal.|
|London Guide 66: The bird (pigeon) has flown. The blo—y b—r B—d had taken his place.|
|Letters from Alabama 1 Jan. 121: Tell the d----d old b----r to come in.|
|Bugger’s Alphabet in (1979) 42: B is the bugger who wished he was there.|
|Sydney Gaz. and NSW Advertiser 5 Dec. 3/4: The prisoner [...] said [...] ‘Now you b-g-r show us where your swag is’.|
|Bell’s Life in Sydney 6 Dec. 3/3: On entering Driscoll's yard [...] he cried out ‘dub up you black b—r’.|
|Tempest and Sunshine 93: Mebby if I’d known all you city buggers was comin’, I’d a kivered my bar feet.|
|(con. 1840s–50s) London Labour and London Poor I 219/1: You are a B for false swearing / In hell they’ll roast you like a herring.|
|From Antietam to Fort Fisher (1985) 48: Ain’t the old bugger lean?letter 1 Oct. in Longacre|
|Hoosier Mosaics 38: Her lip am sweet as sugah, / Her eye am bright as wine, / Dat yaller little boogah / Her name am Emiline.|
|Randiana 34: The poor devil who floundered up the biggest cunt on record and found another bugger looking for his hat.|
|My Secret Life (1966) II 386: The bugger went right into your spendings.|
|Dead Bird (Sydney) 30 Nov. 2/4: [W]ith the intention of letting the blooming thing sink or swim, which ever the b— (term of endearment amongst sailors) liked.|
|Sun. Times (Perth) 10 July 4/7: After semtching out each and every one of the candidates’ names he wrote underneath: no use for any of the b—s!|
|Sarjint Larry an’ Frinds 56: De dhirty bugger! Oi hope ye’ll catch him an’ cut his heart out.|
|DN IV:iii 181: bugger, n. [...] 2. Term of endearment to a child.‘A Word-List From Virginia’ in|
|Working Bullocks 20: Come up, you lazy boggers!|
|(con. 1916) Her Privates We (1986) 16: The wife can look after ’erself [...] I’m not worryin’ about ’er. Th’ bugger were never any bloody good to me.|
|Tropic of Cancer (1963) 307: Sure, I hate those puritanical buggers back home.|
|Coast to Coast 55: ‘Spoilt young b’s’, he muttered, but with no rancour to it.‘The Price’ in Mann|
|Battlers 79: Arr, that bugger, I ain’t got no time for him. Nasty, sneaking little rat, talkin’ that smooth you could knock his face in.|
|One Wet Season 10: I’m Blue Bob th’ b— from Borroloola! Yard me you b—s if you can!|
|Sleep with Strangers (1983) [ebook] He’s a clos-mouthed old bugger where money lies.|
|Call Me When the Cross Turns Over (1958) 24: I hate an unscrupulous bugger.|
|Walk in the Night (1968) 53: Listen, Gipsy, what you let the girls mess with these boggers for?|
|All Night Stand 72: ‘Dirty lot of buggers,’ he says.|
|Inside the Und. 129: Put the buggers [...] up against a wall and shoot them.|
|1985 (1980) 165: Some of you poor buggers looks a bit the worse for wear.|
|Time After Time (1984) 42: ‘Play the buggers along.’ ‘The buggers’ was her collective name for her family.|
|G’DAY 18: ‘Bugger’ is the Clayton’s word of the Australian language. It's the word you have when you don't have the right word.|
|Songlines 52: The leading lawman of Tribe C had the unforgettable name of Cheekybugger Tabagee.|
|Z Town Trilogy 171: Blerry bogger, suiping in secret!|
|Bad Debts (2012) [ebook] Eddie’s a disloyal little bugger with lots of bad habits, but he wouldn’t actually harm anyone.|
|Yes We Have No 340: Any bugger that tries that Nazi shit with me, I’ll hand him his balls on a platter.|
|Turning (2005) 9: Biggie truly is a funny bugger.‘Big World’ in|
|Getting the Buggers to Learn in FE [title].|
|Life 27: There were buggers in there, hard men who’d scream at you, ‘Fuck off!’.|
|Scrublands [ebook] ‘Don’t know why you buggers keep asking me’.|
2. a thing, or creature, with no special connotations.
|‘The Dog’ in Rambler’s Flash Songster 25: One day he was quite out of luck, he had not even had a bone, / Some boys by his appearance struck, took this poor starving b----r home.|
|‘On Monday’ in(1979) 163: And on Sunday after supper, / I stuffed the bugger up her.|
|‘High Chin Bob’ in Songs of the Amer. West (1968) 361: No man has looped a lion’s head and lived to drag the bugger dead.et al.|
|‘Wonder What Ruth thinks About’ in Wellington Dly News (KS) 13 Sept. 3/4: [of a baseball] I hear the Slugger’s voice complain / (Ball one) / That bugger’s passing me again.|
|Murphy (1963) 121: I swear I turned the little b--- on.|
|(con. 1880–90s) I Knock at the Door 164: You have to be snappy on accounta if you weren’t quick the buggers ’ud snap a bit outa your fingers.|
|Asphalt Jungle in Four Novels (1984) 186: Bats are sure funny little buggers.|
|Billy Liar (1962) 89: We’re pulling t’ bugger down.|
|Chips with Everything II xi: I don’t much want to do my own buggers, let alone his.|
|(con. 1940s–60s) Snatches and Lays 84: I chase all the wee wily spermatozoa, / I never let one little bugger escape.‘The Ballad of Professor John Glaister’ in|
|Time After Time (1984) 65: [of a dog] Loathe the bugger, actually.|
|Flame : a Life on the Game 152: I thought I had haemmorrhoids, but it turned out they were anal warts. They froze the buggers off.|
|Happy Like Murderers 228: Well, this bugger must’ve gone down twelve feet.|
3. (also B) something unpleasant or undesirable, a great nuisance; thus a bugger to; a bugger of a.
|Handful of Ausseys 249: This war’s a b—!|
|DSUE (1984) 148/1: An unpleasant, very difficult or dangerous thing, as in WW1 ‘It’s a bugger making a raid on a wet night’.|
|At Swim-Two-Birds 153: Life is very narrow without glasses and a burnt hand is a bugger.|
|Babe is Wise 313: Your chap’s been through a B. of a time while you’ve been sick.|
|Memoirs of the Forties (1984) 237: Drilling before breakfast’s a bugger, believe me.‘Y List’ in|
|Shiralee 167: It must be what one might say a bugger when a man can’t appreciate poetry.|
|Bobbin Up (1961) 40: I’ve got a bugger of a job tomorrer holdin’ up rivets.|
|Cotters’ England (1980) 185: It’s a bloody bugger, pet.|
|(con. 1940s) Andy 40: It’s a beautiful design, bar one thing. They’re buggers to groundloop.|
|Spend, Spend, Spend Scene 11: If that’s what money does for you, I’ll burn the bugger!|
|Fish Factory 63: Most of the people thought he was a bugger of a joker.|
|‘Itinerant Child’ [lyrics] The windshield’s cracked, it’s a bugger to drive.|
|Glue 4: It was a tricky bugger: a smart new Formica-topped job which seemed to constantly shift its weight and spill all over the place.|
4. (S.Afr.) a dedicatedly masculine male, whose lack of sensitivity is more than compensated for by his enthusiasm for all forms of sport.
|Rhodian 84-5 (Rhodes Univ.) n.p.: There are among the stereotypes those poor, confused individuals who have no particular identity, who float between bungy and bugger [DSAE].|
|DSAE].in Style June 136: The term ‘buggers’ does not refer to sexual practices, but comes from ‘rugger-buggers’. Few play rugby, though (throwing the barmaid’s T-shirt around the room doesn’t count). Buggers puke out of res windows; get off with other people’s girlfriends and wrestle each other to the ground at beerstubes [|
5. see booger n.1 (1)
(S.Afr.) ‘the compliant girlfriend of an aggressively masculine man’ (DSAE).
|DSAE].in Style June 136: Bugger-chicks, [...] Drink Esprit, wear pink takkies, have perfectly tanned belly-buttons and often show a startling generosity in dispensing sexual favours to their men’s friends. Bugger chicks respond most satisfactorily to the ritual Ladies Night cry, ‘A bottle of champagne to the first girl to give me her bra’ [|
|informant in DSAE.|
(N.Z.) doughnuts, dumplings or fried scones.
|Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. 36: buggers afloat Doughnuts, dumplings or fried scones. Early C20.|
|Guardian 7 Sept. [Internet] They’ve got themselves in a right bugger’s muddle lately over the vexed endorsement crisis.|
(Aus./N.Z.) a currant damper.
|Reed Dict. of N.Z. Sl. 36: buggers-on-the-coals Currant damper. ANZ mid C19.|
see like buggery under buggery n.
1. to act uncooperatively, to mess around, to cause a deliberate nuisance; occas. as n. without play.
|(con. WWII) Long White Night 139: Someone’s playing funny buggers out front.|
|Pagan Game (1969) 101: Fat lot of time I’ve got to watch you lot playing silly buggers.|
|Dimboola (2000) 69: Come on, no funny buggers. Everyone settle down.|
|Don’t Point That Thing at Me (1991) 15: Let’s stop playing silly buggers.|
|Who’s Been Sleeping in my Bed 103: Don’t play funny buggers with me, brick head.|
|Day of the Dog 119: ‘Little Polly got all the answers, unna?’ ‘I’ve got to, with you too busy playin’ silly buggers.’.|
|Boys from the Blackstuff (1985) [TV script] 97: So he wants to play funny buggers, does he.‘Moonlighter’|
|Minder [TV script] 70: No point in playing silly buggers, McCann. Just hand it over.‘Senior Citizen Caine’|
|Fixx 281: In it was a typed note. It read. ‘stp plyng slly bggrs. mt 1500 hts tmrrw. ry42’.|
|Déjàvu Act II: Fuck you, you poor, washed-up, bloody inconsiderate maniac. Playing silly buggers with people’s lives.|
|Filth 197: The cunt could just be fucking me around [...] Playing silly fannies again. [Ibid.] 248: Some cunt’s playin silly fuckers here.|
|Yes We Have No 338: Some [people] in search of genuine enlightenment but others to play silly buggers.|
|Guardian Weekend 31 July 5: Playing silly buggers with the success rate figures.|
|Big Ask 16: I wouldn’t have been trying to play funny buggers with the most powerful [...] union in the state.|
|Something Fishy (2006) 178: I’m not playing funny buggers here, officer.|
2. to indulge in sexual relations, both heterosexual and homosexual.
|How to Shoot Friends 41: I never played funny buggers with a chick until I was 18 years old.|
|Kitty and Virgil (1999) 41: I hope you’re not thinking [...] I’ve started playing funny buggers in my dotage. Because I haven’t.|
anything considered unpleasant, excessively challenging etc.
|Eight Bells & Top Masts (2001) 7: Tide was a right bugger getting across the Charlton.diary 13 Aug. in|
|Spurs List Digest [Internet] We don’t have it right now, and not having AND being unfit too is a right old bugger.|
|Bonsai Discworld 25 Aug. [Internet] It’s always the same, no matter how much fun I know I’m going to have, no matter how much sheer delight the final piece will afford me, starting is always a right bugger.|
1. a phr. denoting an enthusiast, an obsessive, e.g. a bugger for work.
|in Ozark Folksongs and Folklore (1992) I 158: Old King Cole was a bugger for the hole, / And a bugger for the hole was he.|
|(con. 1940–50s) Spend, Spend, Spend (1978) 12: My father was a bugger for spending the money from Lloyd George on the beer.|
2. someone highly reluctant to do something.
|in Living Dangerously 220: I’m a bugger for getting out of bed.|
SE in slang uses
a male homosexual.
|Get Your Cock Out 94: Even if Robbie hadn’t have his ginormous beef-bayonet rammed savagely down the little buggerbandit’s throat, he would have probably croaked anyway.|
(orig. RN) the brushed back ‘wings’ of hair that adorn the temples of many upper class Englishmen. Coarse rumour imputes these as the handholds for those who are positioning such partners ready for anal penetration.
|Roger’s Profanisaurus 3 in Viz 98 Oct. 12: face fannies n. Bugger’s grips; sideburns. As sported by ‘Rocket’ Ron Haslam, Sir Rhodes Boyson and the singer out of ‘Supergrass’.|
|Roger’s Profanisaurus in Viz Apr. 48: noddies n. The bikini overflow of an unwaxed lady, from its similarity to the effusive bugger’s grips worn by 70s rock legend Noddy Holder.|
|Sun. Times 19 Dec. 5/1: Jones’s silvery bugger grips -an extraordinary set of whiskers.|